Yesterday, we published a piece on indoctrination and propaganda in an American high school. After it went up, we found out there was confusion about sharing the documents and the family who drew attention to the questionable handouts worried about the repercussions to their student. Having been on the receiving end of such repercussions in high school, I, as the author of the piece, decided to pull the article.
Is it not a sad day in America when a parent is scared to call out a teacher’s use of propaganda? How did it come about that parents are scared of the education establishment? Isn’t the education establishment supposed to serve the people?
Furthermore, the fear of serious repercussions by social justice warriors or cultural Marxists has become endemic. It is not the first time that we have had to pull an essay or change photos because someone was being furiously hunted down and attacked by social justice warriors.
For instance, on July 26, 2017, we published the article “I Was Once Transgender. Why I Think Trump Made the Right Decision for the Military”. The original article was published with a picture of a soldier greeting President Trump, which was acquired through a public domain, military images service. The soldier had nothing to do with the issue, it was just a good photo. Nonetheless, a mob of people searched for the image online and finally tracked down the name of the soldier. They never checked to see if the name of the soldier in the picture matched the soldier's name who wrote the article. Having found the name, they then went after any public contact information they could find and began an e-mail and phone campaign against the soldier (who had no idea what was going on) to try and get the man removed from the service. The social justice warriors emailed him, his relatives, and both his commanding officers and fellow soldiers, they messaged him, his wife, his friends and relatives through Facebook, they called his military base, his home, and anyone else they could get a hold of, saying all manner of nasty things and attempting to destroy his professional career and social circles. How do we know? He and his wife both called our office and emailed to share the details, bewildered by the hate that they were receiving and begging us to pull the photo, which we did.
Again, that is not an isolated incident.
Frankly, while I try to keep the tone and tenor of our articles respectful, having watched all manner of classroom disruptions, career attacks, riots, looting, personal assaults, sneaky propaganda, and worse by social justice warriors and cultural Marxists, I must say that they appear to be a clear and present threat to our civil society. With a religious fury, they attempt to destroy and discredit anyone who dares question their beliefs or, heaven help you, challenge their attempts to remake our country.
What is America if you are not free to disagree? What is America if we claim to uphold the 1st Amendment, but have mobs of people, both online and offline, who will do everything they can to destroy you if you don’t tow their ideological line? Even remaining neutral isn't an option. They demand that you are either with them or against. Don't agree with Antifa? Well then, you're a Nazi. Don't agree with certain transgender laws or policies? Well then, you're a bigot and a transphobe. Don't agree with Black Lives Matter? Well then, you're a racist and a white supremacist.
Whether you are on the Right, the Left, or the Middle, we must push back against this radical attempt to silence civil discourse. Cultural Marxism is a national movement loosely united through Black Lives Matter, Antifa, social justice warriors, etc., funded by a variety of interests and supported, unfortunately, by many elites.
No matter your political beliefs, even if you agree with certain social justice positions, please do your best to defend civil, rational discourse in our country. Don’t label people ridiculous, unfounded terms or claim they are filled with hate for disagreeing with you. Listen, respond politely, listen, respond politely (even firmly), etc.; that’s how civil discourse goes. You will have to be brave, to have the courage to defend the freedoms passed on to us in order for future Americans, maybe your kids or grandkids, to enjoy them.
Finally, if you feel you must silence someone for disagreeing with you by assaulting him, shouting him down, getting him fired, etc., then you and your ideas are incredibly weak. Good ideas can weather critiques. It is tyrants and totalitarians who crush the freedom to disagree because they fear their ideas and power will be rejected. We must work very hard to prevent such a totalitarian suppression of free thought and civil discourse by social justice warriors and cultural Marxists. We must keep our country free.
(Image Credit: Shutter Stock)
Devin is the co-founder and Chief Executive Officer of Charlemagne Institute, which operates Intellectual Takeout, Chronicles: A Magazine of American Culture, and the Alcuin Internship. He is a graduate of Hillsdale College where he studied history and political science. Prior to co-founding Charlemagne Institute, he served as the Director of Development at the Center of the American Experiment, a state-based think tank in Minnesota.
Devin is a contributor to local and national newspapers, a frequent guest on a variety of talk shows, such as Minneapolis' KTLK and NPR's Talk of the Nation, and regularly shares culture and education insights presenting to civic groups, schools, and other organizations. In 2011, he was named a Young Leader by the American Swiss Foundation.
Devin and his wife have been married for eighteen years and have six children. When he's not working, Devin enjoys time with family while also relaxing through reading, horticulture, home projects, and skiing and snowboarding.